Having mentioned the important issue in my above post.. on to some observations:
GRUB menu: Only the selected line is visible. Pressing up/down arrow keys reveals the other options, but one can only see one at the time, and it is not obvious that they are there.
Splash screen: Just after the "udev" message, it drops to text mode (but still framebuffer), then returns to graphical when loading GDM. This is with an Intel Mobile integrated graphics card.
X: I chose default (no xorg.conf). No touchpad edge scrolling. Running vxconf enabled it.
Unless I remove the keycode lines in ~./Xmodmap, some of my keys (PgDn, Down arrow) do not act as I expect them to.
Cairo dock: When mousing over and getting "zoom", the original (smaller size one) stays visible in the background, resulting in a double image.
Inserting a USB stick results in automount.. good. Right-clicking desktop icon and selecting "unmount" works, but I'd prefer to see the icon disappear or change, indicating that it's safe to remove. Or, add a "safely remove" option.
Multimedia > Mixer has no icon.